Last year’s share market rally has lifted Perpetual’s second-half profits, with the fund manager’s earnings rising by almost a fifth to $27.3 million.
With the share market jumping by 13 per cent during the six months to December, Perpetual today said it had benefited from the better market conditions and a major campaign to cut costs.
Statutory profits of $27.3 million compared with earnings of $22.9 million a year earlier, and just $3.8 million in the six months to June.
However, the fund manager has yet to experience a major rise in inflows in its funds under management – a key influence on its long-term profits.
The less volatile measure of underlying profit rose slightly to $35.1 million, from $34.3 million in the previous corresponding period.
Despite the improvement on markets, chief executive Geoff Lloyd said the company, which is highly exposed to movements in the equity markets, had not yet experienced a major inflow of funds into the sector.
‘‘Total market flows excluding cash went into positive territory in the September 2012 quarter for the first time after a full year of negative net flows, but it may take a prolonged period of market stability to fully rebuild investor sentiment and create a sustained recovery in flows,’’ Mr Lloyd said.
The Sydney-based fund manager will pay a fully-franked dividend of 50 cents a share, in line with last year’s payment.
Perpetual is in the the midst of a major cost-cutting drive that has seen it shed 450 jobs and save an annualised $12.3 million a year.
Mr Lloyd indicated there was more cost-cutting to come.
‘‘We are six months into a two-year plan, with more to do, and we remain focused on its execution,’’ he said.